Saturday, April 20, 2002, Chandigarh, India

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Wheat crop reduced to ashes
Neshta/Roarawala (Amritsar), April 19
Standing wheat crop in hundreds of acres in border villages was reduced to ashes today in a fire caused by a spark triggered by a transformer following a mine blast.
The blackened sky put the Pakistani Rangers on high alert following a series of mine blasts.

Fire destroys wheat crop

Flames engulf wheat crop in a border area in Amritsar district after a series of mine blasts. — Photo Rajiv Sharma

It’s shuffle and reshuffle
Chandigarh, April 19
Though in office for close to two months, the top agenda of the Congress in Punjab remains postings and transfers. The common refrain in the corridors of power is that it is “Captain’s rule” and all that his “boys” in the government do is to shuffle and reshuffle the bureaucrats.

US Ambassador to India Robert Blackwill visited the historic Jallianwala Bagh to pay homage to the martyrs of the April 13, 1919, massacre.
(28k, 56k)

Govt to review old-age pension cases
Ludhiana, April 19
The newly elected Congress government in the state is planning to review old-age pension cases and identify those who have been getting the pension though not eligible for the same.




Govt apathy renders truck owners jobless
Bathinda, April 19
Sarbjit Singh of Goniana mandi, 15 km from here, who owned a truck before January 11 and had given employment to two persons one as driver and the other as cleaner of his vehicle, has been rendered unemployed after his truck was burnt at Udasar near Bikaner in Rajasthan while on Military duty.

Punjab to redesignate medical teachers
Patiala, April 19
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said today that medical teachers in all three medical colleges of the state would be redesignated, besides assuring to make provisions to ensure that funds generated by the medical colleges would be used for their improvement only.

Nepotism alleged in law officers’ selection
Chandigarh, April 19
In less than 24 hours of the list of law officers in the Punjab Advocate General’s office being released by the Department of Home Affairs and Justice, the appointments have come under a cloud with an Assistant Advocate-General refusing to join. At least three or four other members of the Bar are expected to follow suit.

Badal govt gave us no undue ad: ‘Ajit’
Chandigarh, April 19
The spokesman of a Jalandhar-based language daily, ‘Ajit’, today refuted the government’s charge that the Badal regime had doled out advertisements to it worth Rs 13 crore during its five-year rule in Punjab.

Probe into quality of road work
Chandigarh, April 19
Suspecting the quality of work done on newly built roads in certain areas in Punjab, the Public Works Department (B and R) authorities have started a probe. Most of these roads are in the Gurdaspur and Amritsar belt.


BJYM to contest 50 corpn seats
Phagwara, April 19
The Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, Punjab, will contest about 50 seats in the coming elections for the four Corporations of Jalandhar, Amritsar, Ludhiana and Patiala, Mr Sukhminder Singh Grewal, morcha President, said here today. Special poll panels had been constituted to mobilise youth for these elections.

SGPC member alleges discrimination on election eve
Patiala, April 19
The Akali-BJP alliance, which has only recently been humbled in the assembly elections here may not find the going smooth in the coming Municipal Corporation elections with local Shiromani Committee Member Kamlesh Kaur today alleging she was not accorded proper ‘respect’ at a joint meeting held here and painted a dismal picture for the alliance in the elections, if the present trend continued.


MC employees hold protest march
Sangrur, April 19
A large number of employees of the local municipal council today took out a protest march through the town against the non-payment of salaries for March and non-depositing of the deducted Provident Fund amount of Rs 40 lakh into their Provident Fund accounts. They also raised slogans against the Punjab Government and wore black badges.

Rs 37 cr released for 4 corporations
Jalandhar, April 19
The state Finance Ministry today released a grant of Rs 37 crore for the four municipal corporations in Jalandhar, Amritsar, Ludhiana and Patiala which were facing acute financial crises after the abolition of octroi.

Ropar resident convicted
Chandigarh, April 19
A resident of Ropar, Nashib Singh, was convicted and sentenced to six months’ rigorous imprisonment by a local court today. The complaint against him was filed on April 25, 2000, under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instrument Act and under Sections 420 and 422 of the IPC .

Mann flays Badal
Patiala, April 19
Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, President, SAD (Amritsar), today criticised the former Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, for ‘supporting’ Dr Jasbir Singh Ahluwalia, Vice-Chancellor, Punjabi University, against whom two criminal cases have been registered.

VIPs challaned for misusing red light
Amritsar, April 19
On the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, a high-powered committee comprising two AIGs and senior civil and police officials of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh today challaned the vehicles of more than 100 influential persons, including judges, ministers, MLAs and senior medical officer, for flouting the directives of the court by misusing red light and tainted glasses.

Judges’ strength ‘low’ in HC
Gidderbaha, April 19
The number of judges in the Punjab and Haryana High Court at present is only 25 judges while at least 40 judges are required to handle the growing number of cases.
This was stated by Mr M.S. Gill, a Judge in the Punjab and Haryana High Court at a Lok Adalat here today.


Diversify crops, say experts
Jalandhar, April 19
Since there are few takers for wheat and paddy crops outside Punjab, farmers should go in for cash crops like turmeric, onion and oilseeds to break the monopoly of other states.


Murder suspect held
Moga, April 19

A man wanted by the Canadian police in connection with a 16-year-old murder has been arrested in Punjab, Moga district police chief Varinder Kumar said.
In August, 1986, Raghubir Singh Gill allegedly stabbed and killed a girl in Canada, who was attempting an attack on one of his acquaintances, Major Singh, with a knife.

3 killed as jeep rams into train
Ferozepore, April 19
Three persons were killed and two seriously injured when their jeep rammed into a passenger train at an unmanned level crossing between Chak Pakhi and Vanwala villages, a 20-minute drive from Fazilka railway station, in Ferozepore division of the Northern Railway this morning.

Dreaded terrorist arrested
Muktsar, April 19
The police has arrested a dreaded terrorist namely Baldev Singh Dohak, who crossed over to Pakistan a number of time and have links with the ISI. One live hand grenade, one AK-56 assault rifle, four magazines and 65 cartridges were seized from his possession.

Railway official shot at
Ludhiana, April 19
Two scooter-borne assailants shot at and seriously injured a senior railway official in the Railway Colony, behind military canteen, near Jagraon overbridge, tonight.
Mr B.C. Sharma, a senior Ticket Inspector with the Railways, was admitted to CMC hospital. His condition is stated to be serious.


17 teachers found absent
Ferozepore, April 19
In a campaign initiated by the Vigilance Department, 17 teachers in government schools had been found absent and two schools closed before the scheduled time in the villages along with Indo-Pak border.

PCCTU members hold dharna
Chandigarh, April 19
On a call given by the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers Union, the executive committee members along with 200 teachers sat on a dharna in front of the office of the DPI (Colleges) in Sector 17 here today. The objective of the dharna was to draw attention of the Punjab Government towards the problems of the teachers of non- government aided colleges of Punjab and Chandigarh.

Class X chitrakala exam on April 21
Bathinda, April 19
The Punjab School Education Board today announced dates for the Class X chitrakala exam. The exam, which was held in March, would be conducted again on April 21, 2002.

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